The mega-hack of the Democratic National Committee’s emails, as exposed by Wikileaks last month, is one of the most politically consequential cyber-thefts of all time. Its revelations of shady deals have caused bad press for the Democrats in an election year and have led to the resignation of DNC chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz, with three more top DNC officials following suit. More leaks are coming, and some Democrats now fear an “October surprise” designed to finish Hillary Clinton off just before the election.
Whodunit is therefore an important question. The Clinton campaign and the DNC have stated forthrightly that they see a Russian hand behind this dirty operation, with the Kremlin using Wikileaks as their fence for stolen emails. As I detailed in a recent column, that’s a very plausible answer that’s supported by the facts we know so far.
It’s also the conclusion of most American intelligence agencies. Although the criminal incident is under FBI investigation, that Kremlin-linked hackers were behind the cyber-pillaging of the DNC is widely accepted in the Intelligence Community, which has tracked the hackers in question for years.
However, there’s been pushback against this theory, including from the Trump campaign, which clearly sees Wikileaks doing their job for them—and they like it. Roger Stone, a longtime Trump intimate and mouthpiece, recently dismissed any Russian involvement in the DNC hack as Clintonian propaganda, while on Twitter Stone hailed Julian Assange, the founder and boss of Wikileaks, as a “hero.”
Since Assange was instrumental in the leaking of hundreds of thousands of classified documents stolen from the American government by Bradley (now Chelsea) Manning and Edward Snowden, doing colossal damage to our foreign relationships and our intelligence agencies, it’s safe to say that Stone’s depiction isn’t mainstream in Republican circles.
Read the rest at The Observer…